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March Madness 2012 Bubble Watch Update: Fan Perspective
It is just four days until selection Sunday, so teams on the bubble for the NCAA tournament are getting down to their final chances to impress the committee and get an invitation to 2012 March Madness. College basketball fans like myself across the country are on the NCAA bubble watch, sweating bullets over their teams winning at least a couple of games in the conference tourneys to give them the boost they need to get an invite to the big dance.
The 2012 NCAA tournament starts March 13 with the play-in round, and the action for the field of 64 begins March 15th. The bubble teams discussed below are by no means locks, but they all at least control their own destiny.
Texas Longhorns - It is actually pretty simple for Texas (19-12). Just beat Iowa State in Ames on March 8th and you're in, lose and you are very likely out. There are no guarantees even with a win, but given their strong RPI and tough schedule, most analysts have the Horns penciled in as a No. 12 or 13 seed if they advance past the first round of the Big 12 tourney.
Connecticut Huskies - Defending 2011 NCAA champion Connecticut (19-12) might have already punched their ticket to this year's March Madness with an 81-67 win over DePaul in the Big East Tournament Tuesday, but another win in their second round match up against West Virginia on Wednesday would make it a sure thing. That said, West Virginia is also likely in, but no lock, so both teams have got more than pride to play for.
Northwestern Wildcats - The 18-12 Wildcats upped their chances for their first NCAA tournament berth by beating Iowa last Saturday, and if they can defeat Minnesota in the first round of the Big Ten conference tournament on March 8, then the selection committee will likely give them the nod at last.
Seton Hall Pirates - The 20-11 Pirates are another Big East team that needs one more win to lock up a trip to March Madness, but they have a tough assignment as they have to beat a strong Louisville team in the second round of the conference tourney Wednesday. Seton Hall could still get in with a loss, but it will be long weekend of waiting if they don't get the W today.
University of South Florida Bulls (USF) - USF (19-12) is in a must win situation against Villanova in the second round of the Big East tournament, luckily the Bulls have already beaten a relatively weak Villanova team twice this year. That said, a loss would almost certainly mean that USF will be playing in the NIT rather than the NCAA tournament.
Clayton Browne lives in Austin, Texas and is a huge college hoops fan.
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